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Bioessays. 1999 Jul;21(7):596-603.

Accessing DNA damage in chromatin: insights from transcription.

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Department of Biochemistry and biophysics, Washington State University, Pullman, USA.


Recently, there has been a convergence of fields studying the processing of DNA, such as transcription, replication, and repair. This convergence has been centered around the packaging of DNA in chromatin. Chromatin structure affects all aspects of DNA processing because it modulates access of proteins to DNA. Therefore, a central theme has become the mechanism(s) for accessing DNA in chromatin. It seems likely that mechanisms involved in one of these processes may also be used in others. For example, the discovery of transcriptional coactivators with histone acetyltransferase activity and chromatin remodeling complexes has provided possible mechanisms required for efficient repair of DNA in chromatin.

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